Summary of "The Year of the Hare"
When on assignment Kaarlo Vatanen - journalist - and his photographer accidentally run over a hare. When Vatanen gets out of the car he finds the hare with a broken leg. This fills him with compassion and makes him realize that he does not want to return to his ordinary life and his bad marriage.
Instead he brings the hare with him on a journey through Finland. His affection and friendship with the hare grows stronger every day. This is mutual. Vatanen and the hare meet many unique Finnish characters, amongst them a trigger-happy priest and a religious skiing instructor who sacrifices animals.
They also meet a retired police officer who has done extensive research on the president Kekkonen. He also has a revolutionary theory about the president, something which will come in handy later for Vatanen.
This is a very funny book where you will meet many Finnish sterotypes and there will be lots of alcohol. It is a short novel about escaping society, embrazing life and being free. Paasilinna has written over 30 novel and this is his third which was first published in 1975. The Year of the Hare is the only one that I have found translated to English.